Maraj has been dancing since the ripe age of 4 beginning with ballet. As she got in the later years of elementary school, she took additional lessons in jazz, tap, modern dance and gymnastics. This is where she started choreography for her school plays and community center. Her dance idols are Debbie Allen and Alvin Ailey.
Her love for dance evolved at the local outdoor “jam” sessions in her neighborhood where when she danced, people would crowd around her. She would welcome competition from others and end as the reigning dancer.
Her previous training in dance enabled her to develop her capabilities as a “breakdancer” which we now know as an element of hip-hop. She then joined local street dance crews “break-dancing” in her neighborhood and her dance crew would compete against other dance crews. Coming from Queens, NY, she then started to branch out into Manhattan and compete against other dancers in Washington Square Park and at parties.
Through high school and college she continued modern and jazz dance classes. While attending Borough of Manhattan Community College, she was given the opportunity of a life time to meet one of her idols, Alvin Ailey, and dance with a group he created in the school. Maraj danced with this group until she relocated to Florida.
Now a citizen of Florida, she has danced in music videos for local artists. While singing with other artists and bands, she also branched into her solo singing career. She choreographed all of her shows accompanied by two dancers behind her. She is an accomplished singer who sang and toured with the 80's freestyle group, Company B, performed with local bands and her own singing group, Sil-o-et.
In addition to dancing and singing, she has also had a been in a few movies as a leading and supporting actress and as an extra in the "Ali" movie. While she lived in New York she trained as an actress and also trained in Florida.
She continued to created dance routines for kid parties, taught at three schools in Florida, provided hip-hop dance workshops for the Broward County Library System, choreographed a workout video for Elle Magazine, and was the choreographer for Encore Performing Arts Center, a non-profit organization that provides free workshops in the arts for kids who audition and then perform in two musicals a year and on location.
To teach people of all ages the correct form of hip-hop. A lot of people tend to believe that “booty” dancing is hip-hop. Unfortunately, the music videos created today desensitize both adults and kids to “soft” porn and create the notion that it is okay for females to demoralize themselves creating attention that would send the viewer fantasizing about sex.
People imitate what they see when others create the idea that it is okay and it brings attention. Maraj wants to teach people how to get attention in a positive fashion. Booty dancing is not tolerated in any of classes provided by Maraj. Many students that begun with Maraj only knew “booty” and when asked to dance without it, were lost. My purpose is to educate my students using the true art of hip-hop, so when they do dance, they can display their creativity and feel comfortable dancing anywhere and create attention in a clean, fun, and positive way.
Maraj classes are full of energy, fun, help builds confidence, makes you feel a sense of accomplishment and develops self-esteem, responsibility, teamwork, accountability and work ethic. Maraj also assists with fitness for kids and adults. Welcome to Jus Hip-hop.